Orlando Medicaid Planning Tools to Consider
Medicaid is designed in such a way that people who need it can still qualify for assistance with nursing home care, while still retaining access to some assets. Medicaid counts some assets in determining whether or not someone qualifies, which is why it’s important to plan ahead. Failure to do so could result in a denial because you have too many assets, or you will need to liquidate them before Medicaid will cover any assisted-living costs.
Essentially, you cannot be “wealthy” and still qualify for Medicaid. You must spend down your assets before qualifying. However, what you deem as wealthy and what Medicaid deems as wealthy are vastly different in most cases. Proactive planning can help keep you from scrambling to liquidate your assets because you need immediate assistance.
In most cases, people are caught off guard, and the need for assisted living services or in-home care happens practically overnight. This can deplete your savings and assets in a short time as nursing homes and similar types of care are very expensive.
Retaining an Orlando Medicaid planning attorney can help. At the Law Offices of Shea A. Fugate, P.A., we specialize in elder law and related topics. We routinely help clients with their Medicaid planning needs, which can be a big relief if the need for Medicaid arises.
Purchase a Long-Term Care Insurance Policy
One option you might want to consider is purchasing a long-term-care insurance policy. However, you want to purchase it when you are younger and healthier, otherwise it could be unaffordable. In some cases, it might not even be available.
Don’t just purchase a policy because the price looks good. You need to conduct a thorough investigation of the company in order to ensure the carrier is trustworthy and has a reputation for paying benefits when owed. This is one topic that can be discussed with your Orlando estate planning attorney to determine how it will fit into your overall plan.
Gift Property to Others
Another option to consider is gifting your property to others now rather than holding onto it to distribute to your loved ones through your will. If you only retain what you need for long-term care and other needs, it could put you below the threshold for Medicaid. Funds that are gifted to others will be taken out of your estate value and won’t be counted when determining eligibility.
Be advised that you can’t give all your wealth away as a way of trying to apply for Medicaid. You can make gifts up to a certain amount per person each year. The reason for this has nothing to do with Medicaid, it’s for avoiding gift and estate taxes. If you are making gifts for the purpose of qualifying for Medicaid, you can expect that your transfers will be scrutinized. The government wants to ensure you are not making these transfers in a fraudulent manner. Did you sell off the property to a family member for much less than it’s worth? You don’t want to be penalized or be declared ineligible.
Contact an Orlando Medicaid Planning Attorney
If you need assistance with Medicaid eligibility or you have been denied, contact an Orlando Medicaid planning attorney at the Law Offices of Shea A. Fugate, P.A. today to schedule an initial consultation.